Hampshire Astronomical Group

Established 1960, Online since 1998

Observatory Accessibility

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Hampshire Astronomical Group welcome you!

Formed in 1960 in Portsmouth the ‘Hampshire Astronomical Group’ has grown from strength to strength since our formation. Our home is now based at the Clanfield Observatory, one of the finest and largest amateur astronomical observatories in the UK.

Located on Hinton Heights on the edge of the South Downs near the villages of Clanfield and Horndean (between Petersfield and Portsmouth) you will find a superbly equipped Observatory and reasonably dark skies - measured as 20.6mag/arc2. Our night sky has noticeably darkened since the relighting of Hampshire.

We have a full program of monthly public lectures held at the Clanfield Memorial Hall, South Lane, Clanfield, which are open to all. The Group also hold regular Open Evenings from the autumn through to spring and Solar Observing events during the day in the summer months.

We also host private visits and run astronomical courses for the public at the observatory. All of the above is voluntarily supported by our very active and enthusiastic membership.

Details of all the above are on our website so please feel free to browse, it is constantly up-dated, so why not bookmark us in your browser under ‘favourites’? and visit often.

Clear Nights and Dark Skies.

Richard Judd - President
Hampshire Astronomical Group

What's on in the next month...

Saturday,
10th September
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & Saturn
- start time 7:45pm

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Sunday,
11th September
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & Saturn
- start time 7:45pm

More details...

What's on between next month and 6 months...

Friday,
7th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Saturday,
8th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
9th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
14th October
2016
William Herschel and the Rings of Uranus
A talk by Dr Stuart Eves
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
5th November
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Pleiades, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
6th November
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Pleiades, M13
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
11th November
2016
Mysteries of the Solar System
A talk by Dr Chris North
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
3rd December
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Orion, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
4th December
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Orion, M13
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
9th December
2016
Herschel’s Incredibly Cool Universe
A talk by Dr Chris Pearson
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
13th January
2017
Protecting Space for Future Generations
A talk by Professor Richard Crowther
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
10th February
2017
Isaac Newton and the Surrey Pumas
A talk by Mike Frost, BAA Historical Section Director
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...

Astronomical Events for August 2016

Moon

11 August – 21:30 BST – The Moon will make an equilateral triangle with Mars and Saturn this evening.  They can be seen low in the south-southwest.

12 August – The Moon, Mars and Saturn will be in a straight line.

26 August – Good time to look at the crater Helicon which lies close to Sinus Iridum.

31 August – 5:32 BST– Look low in the east for a crescent Moon which will be 1% lit.

Planets

4 August – Looking low in the west, approximately 20 minutes after sunset, it may be possible to see Mercury which can be found nearly 2° northeast of the Moon.  Venus is 8½° to the right of Mercury.

5 August – Looking low in the west approximately 40 minutes after sunset, Jupiter can be seen 4° east of the Moon.

10 August – Pallas, a minor planet, can be found near the globular cluster, M15.

12/13 August – Pallas will be approximately 1° from the centre of M15.

15 August – 23:00 BST – Neptune will be visible in the south east, with Uranus rising two hours later.

16 August – Mercury reaches greatest elongation.  The planet will appear separated from the Sun by 27°.

20 August – The asteroid Pallas reaches opposition and can be located in Pegasus near the border to Equuleus.

24 August – Mars can be seen 1¾° north of Antares.  Mars, Saturn and Antares appear in a line.

27 August – Jupiter and Venus will appear to be approximately 9 arcminutes apart.  They can be seen low in the west after sunset.

Meteor Showers

1 August – Northern Capricornid meteor shower peak.

6 August – Southern Iota Aquariid meteor shower peak.

12 August – 14:00-16:30 BST – Perseid meteor shower peak with a possible ZHR of 150-160 meteors an hour.  As this is during the day, the best time to view the Perseids is from midnight through to dawn on the 10/11, 11/12, 12/13 and 13/14 August.

Miscellaneous

August – Last chance to observe noctilucent clouds.  Look for them 1½ to 2 hours after sunset or before sunrise, where they appear low in the northwest in the evening or low in the northeast in the morning.

3 August – The new Moon means it is a good time to look at some summer deep-sky objects such as M27 (the Dumbbell Nebula), NGC 7000 (the North American Nebula), and M57 (the Ring Nebula).

Moon Image Credit: Steve Knight
Mercury & Mars Images Credit: NASA
Noctilucent Clouds Image Credit: David Briggs

Southdowns Planetarium

The South Downs Planetarium is a registered educational charity, which is run by a small team of experienced and dedicated volunteers.
The Planetarium operates throughout the year, but is not open every day.

Members of the public are welcome to visit the Planetarium at the show times listed on this website.

Public Shows and Dates

Friday 16th September - 7.30pm - Shine on Harvest Moon

Saturday 17th September - 1.30pm to 4.30pm - COURSE - How to Choose and use your new Telescope

Sunday 18th September - 3.30pm - Summertime Stars, Moon and Planets

Friday 23rd September - 7.30pm - The Northern Lights

Sunday 25th September - 3.30pm - The Northern Lights

As seats sell out fast, it is essential to book your seat.

Admission Prices: £6.00 for adults, or £4.00 for children 6 to 16yrs. Cash or Cheque Only

The South Downs Planetarium Trust is a Registered Educational Charity No. 1096869.

For further information about all South Downs Planetarium activities, contact: 

The South Downs Planetarium and Science Centre
Sir Patrick Moore Building
Kingsham Farm
Kingsham Road
Chichester
West Sussex PO19 8RP

For Sat Nav Users:-

Enter PO19 8AE

Tel: 01243 774400
Ticket hotline: 07818 297292



e-mail: sdownsplanet@btconnect.com

http://www.southdowns.org.uk/

Winchester Science Centre & Planetarium Lecture Series

Adult evening lectures on the second Wednesday's of the Month at 4.30pm and 6.30pm, each follow by a short Planetarium Show about the months sky.

Wednesday 14th Sept 2016 -- Aurora Borealis: Mystery on our cosmological doorstep -- talk by Derek McKay-Bukowski (STFC)

Wednesday 12th October 2016 -- The Origins of Thermonuclear Supernovae -- Talk by Dr Michael Childress (University of Southampton)

Wednesday 9th November 2016 -- Sun Dogs and Blue Moons -- Talk by Prof Don Kurtz

Wednesday 14th December 2016 -- Dark Matter -- Talk by Prof Justin Read (University of Surrey)

Wednesday 11th January 2017 -- A Universe of dwarf galaxies -- Talk by Samantha Penny

These events often sell out so pre-book or call to check on (01962) 863791

For more details on the talks and tickets please visit the Intech web site

What's on after the next 6 months...

Friday,
10th March
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Michael Maunder
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
21st April
2017
TItle TBA
A talk by Professor Jocelyn Bell Burnell
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
12th May
2017
Astrobiology : Tour of the Solar System
A talk by William Joyce
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
9th June
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Dr Aprajita Verma
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
13th October
2017
Title TBA
A talk by Professor Lucie Green
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...

After Dark at Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium

After Dark: adults only

Thurs 15th Sept, Tues 11th Oct, Tuesday 22nd Nov & Mon 19th Dec.

Visit the planetarium and play about in the exhibition after the kids have gone home. Activities run throughout the evening so no problem if you cannot get here for 6pm or if you need to leave early.

Ticket price: £10/£8 including one planetarium show and entry to the centre. Add the other show for just +£2.

Teachers: free entry (includes one show); send requests in advance by email using your school/college email address.

Online booking (if you want to see both shows, add the second on the next page)

Telephone bookings (01962) 891925. Please have your credit/debit card ready. If the front desk is too busy for staff to answer your call straight away you can leave your number and they will call you back.

Strictly ages 18yr+ (if you're lucky enough to look younger, please bring ID).

For more details of the events please check out After Dark

Future Learn Free Astronomy Courses

FutureLearn provides a range of free online courses from some of the world's leading educators. Courses are created by UK and international universities, as well as cultural institutions and global centres of excellence in a range of subject areas, like the British Council and the European Space Agency.

A number of Astronomy courses are listed in the website's Science, Maths and Technology category. Recent titles have included 'Moons' and 'In the Night Sky: Orion', both from The Open University. The lead educator on the Orion course, Professor Monica Grady, CBE, worked as part of the project team that successfully landed the Philae probe on a comet last November.

An added advantage of FutureLearn is its focus on 'social learning', whereby learners from all over the world can have conversations about the topics covered during a course with one another, and with the academics leading the course.

FutureLearn adds courses throughout the year and repeats popular titles, so the easiest way to keep up to date is to register on the website. Details on upcoming Astronomy courses will also be listed here.

Next Free Online Astronomy Courses:

Earth Observation from Space: the Optical View: - Starts 12th September 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

How to Survive on Mars: Starts 24th October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

Moons: - Starts 31st October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here